Thursday, August 22, 2013

Woman's Work: Jaime Mandarino

Meet Jaime, a friend of mine and a working mom.  She is also an independent Distributor with It Works! and a sponsor of Track 8!

1. What is your job, age, children’s ages, married/single, etc? Introduce yourself!
Hi! My name is Jaime Mandarino. I am 31 (when did that happen?!) I’m married to my best friend, Steve. We have a wonderful little boy, Luke, who will be 2 at the end of August. I am a labor and delivery nurse and an It Works! Independent Distributor selling awesome health, wellness, and beauty products.

2. What is your work schedule?
As an RN I usually work 2 days a week, but for 12 hour shifts! My hours are 7am-730pm, but I'm there earlier and usually stay a little later than those times.  As an It Works! Independent Distributor, I set my own schedule, which is nice.
3. What works really well about your current schedule/situation?
I work my two 12 hour shifts at the hospital, then I'm done until the next week. It's a lot, but I can sort of do it, then be done for a little bit.   With It Works! everything works out great because there is no set schedule. I can schedule it around my life.

4. What do you find challenging/awful/crazy about your current schedule/situation?
The days I work the 12 hour shifts, I don't get to see Luke- at all. Most people, probably, see their kids 7 days a week. I only see mine 5 days a week because he's still asleep when I leave and already asleep when I come home. I'm also exhausted when I come home, so I might not be the best company to my husband- but I try!

5. How do you handle childcare?
I am so blessed when it comes to childcare. My mom watches Luke when I'm at work. Steve drops him off and picks him up and gets dinner for him and plays until Luke's bedtime. But, l live in Mesa and my mom lives in Phoenix, so there's no dropping Luke off for a little bit while I go do this and that. He's my little companion. 

6. When do you get family time?
When I come home from work, Steve and I have some time together to hang out, eat dinner, watch some TV, and unwind. I get to be with Luke on days that I'm not working. On days when I don't work, we have dinner together as a family and play with Luke before his bedtime. Steve works Monday thru Friday, so family time happens mostly on Saturdays and Sundays. Sunday afternoons we head over to my parents house to spend time with them and have dinner. We go to church as a family either Saturday afternoon or Sunday morning.

How do you fit couple time into the mix?
When I get home from work, but like I said before, I'm not sure it's super quality time. We've had friends come over before and "watch" Luke while he's asleep so we can have date night. We've been talking about doing this more often. Maybe having a few couples in the mix and we can take turns watching each other’s kids. 

7. Do you have time for yourself? If so, what is your favorite way to spend it?
Every two weeks my husband hangs out with the guys and plays board games. So I take that opportunity for me time. I usually am doing something crafty. I love to scrapbook. I'm big into digital scrapbooking. I always have several projects going on at once. My current crafty projects are finishing Luke's first year baby calendar (I already made his baby scrapbook, yay me!), making a digital scrapbook for my mom for her birthday, and making Christmas stockings. I guess I do need to go out more, but it's hard for me to leave Luke.

8. How do you and your husband share household/family responsibilities? Do you have set “chores” or do you each just do whatever needs to get done?
We talked about this before we got married. I thought it would be a big discussion, but it ended up being short and simple because we pretty much agreed with each other right off the bat. So that was nice. In a really broad sense, I'm in charge of the inside and he's in charge of the outside and anything to do with bugs. Steve also cleans the dishes after I've cooked dinner. As far as Luke, I'm pretty much in charge of what he eats and I make sure we have things on hand that Steve can feed him when I'm at work. I'm home alone with him a lot, so we have our little routines down. I also am usually in charge of bathing Luke and making appointments for him, which I certainly don't mind. I am proud to say that Steve does his fair share of diapers :) Luke would tell you that whenever Daddy is around Daddy must either be playing with him or holding him! One thing that Steve took upon himself to do was mostly be in charge of Luke at church so I can try to concentrate. I thought that was really sweet. (I don't leave him high and dry though- I pack the diaper bag with things to hopefully entertain Luke and give Steve looks that say, "I'm here to help.")

9. If you could change one thing about your current situation, what would it be?
As much as I like being a labor and delivery nurse- I would work at the hospital less. Which is actually one of my goals of being an It Works! Independent Distributor.

10. What advice would you give other working moms struggling with the balance?
Pray! Sometimes you just have to say "God help me!" Also, realize that from time to time you're house may look like a toy store and laundry mat simultaneously exploded! Don't let other people get you down or compare yourself to others in a negative way. And personally for me, it has helped me to realize that my parents actually did know everything.

11. Do you have any thoughts on the editorials regarding whether or not women really can “have it all” (Sheryl Sandberg, Marissa Mayer, Anne-Marie Slaughter)
       I feel like this is such a touchy subject. People, especially women, have really strong feelings about this. I suppose it depends on your definition of “have it all.” In the cases of these editorials, the definition is career and family.  If you believe that God is calling you to have a career and a family life, then yes, it is possible. I, along with my friends and family members, are living proof.  I think it’s good to have the attitude “I can have it all” as long as it’s coming from a healthy place and not a place of judgment or vanity. However, I agree that it depends on the kind of job you have. If you work 40 plus plus hours a week like Anne- Marie Slaughter did when she worked in D.C., then, honestly, you really might not have enough time for a family. Personally, I’m blessed to be able to work part time as an RN. This was a decision Steve and I made because we thought it was important. Sometimes, though, I want to totally quit my nursing job and devote all my time and energy to my family. But then I think about how hard I’ve worked to become an RN and how I’ve touched people’s lives and they have touched mine, and it keeps me going. As an It Works! Independent Distributor, I can totally plan my job around my life instead of the other way around and that’s awesome. It helps me “have it all”, if you will.
       I really agree that there are barriers that need to be overcome. Moms are judged left and right. The part of Slaughter’s editorial about a boss comparing how dedicated a marathon runner is, but probably wouldn’t think that way of a working mom, seemed completely plausible. Barriers that I would like to see overcome are women feeling forced to go back to work so soon after giving birth and giving working moms time and space to breast pump. (I’ve gone a twelve hour shift with out pumping. It brought me to tears.) One more barrier we moms need to pull together on is being nice to other moms and ourselves!
I guess if we’re wondering if we can have it all, we should think of this, “For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be.” Luke 12:34.

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